China’s military progress in the region, as well as North Korea’s nuclear ambitions, are potential risks for Japan, according to Tokyo’s annual defence white paper, published on Tuesday.
The report mentioned the changing relationship between China’s army and the Communist Party as a reason for concern. It said that relations between the two were “getting complex”, without giving any additional details.
Analysts speculate that Japan’s conclusion may have to do with the latest calls from Chinese officers and agency officials towards the Communist Party to take sharper measures in regional territorial disputes with rival countries.
A conclusion in the same direction was taken by a previous paper, published by Tokyo in 2011, which mentioned China’s increased ambitions. “China has responded to conflicting issues involving Japan and other neighbouring countries in a way that has been criticized as assertive, raising worries about its future direction,” the 2011 paper said.
Japan has also noticed in the 2012 report the military efforts made by North Korea since the recent change of leadership. “After the death of National Defence Commission Chairman Kim Jong-il, First Chairman Kim Jong-un frequently visited the military and referred to the importance of the military. Its stance of regarding the military as important and relying on it will likely be maintained,” it said.